Thursday, 20 July 2017

Other countries back India in its standoff with China, said Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj today about the dispute at the border with Sikkim which began more than a month ago. Ms Swaraj said in parliament that "India has not said anything unreasonable" and that "all countries are in India's support".

 The government has been stressing that it is working diplomatic channels to defuse the tension; Beijing, on the other hand, has spoken harshly with warnings of "serious consequences" if India does not pull back its soldiers.

Indian sources have confirmed that foreign embassies in Delhi have expressed concern about the simmering tension and have been reassured of Delhi's commitment to finding a peaceful solution. 

China says that on June 16, Indian troops crossed the border at Sikkim to stop the construction of a road on the Donglang plateau which it claims as its territory. But Bhutan claims the area, which it refers to as Dokalam, as its land, and India has agreed with that assessment. 

 "As long as it was between China and Bhutan, we had nothing to do with it. But since this deals with the tri-junction point it affects our security position," said the Foreign Minister today, referring to the geography of the dispute at the tri-junction of India, Tibet and Bhutan. 

 India had warned China that the road would be seen as a serious security issue because it gives Beijing access to the so-called Chicken's Neck, a narrow piece of land linking mainland India with its seven north-eastern states. 

 Yesterday, Uttar Pradesh leader Mulayam Singh Yadav told parliament that he believes China is preparing to attack India with the help of its long-term ally, Pakistan. He said nuclear weapons have been placed by Beijing in Pakistan for the assault, and asked for intelligence agencies to investigate.
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